A lush, well-maintained lawn is the ideal green frame for colourful herbaceous borders, a fantastic setting for summer picnics as well as a foraging area for native birds and animals. Keeping your lawn looking beautiful may be a problem sometimes, especially when you are new to gardening.
Once you’ve built your dream garden space and installed the area’s best soil and grass, how are you going to keep it appearing the best? We’re going to teach you how to keep your yard looking good throughout the year. To avoid getting a dull, weed plagued lawn, follow these easy measures and enforce a daily maintenance schedule.
Most of these approaches are better used on an autumn lawn and in the spring, offering the grass the best opportunity to restore and grow in the summer.
1- Mow your lawn regularly
It is best to cut just one-third of the length of the grass when mowing your lawn. The time of year and current weather conditions will decide how much you need to trim. Cut the grass in summer at least once a week and once every two weeks in spring, fall, and mild winters. Regular trimming facilitates the spreading of the roots, that will help to fill spaces and obstruct weeds.
In summer, raise your mower’s cutting height to keep the grass longer, about 5-10 cm; this will make it less likely to go brown during dry conditions. Maintain the mower well balanced and the blades clean.
When the field or turf is wet, avoid mowing, as this will ruin the lawn and inhibit healthy future growth. If you have a mower with a roller, it will need to alternate the direction of mowing each time.
2- Edge your lawn
Edging a lawn is a fresh, trimmed lawn’s final touch. To mark the edge of your yard, use a pair of long-handled shears and avoid the grass from spreading into borders. It neatens your landscape immediately, producing a very pleasing finish. Where the grass has extended into the boundary, use a spade or half-moon edger to transform it to build a shallow moat or add permanent edging that the grass will not cross.
3- Remove your lawn weeds and moss
Weeds can appear everywhere as birds flying over, pets and other animals running around the lawn or even on your clothes and shoes can carry them into the yard. With a wide variety of forms that are common in gardens, lawn weeds may grow as either seed heads or flowers.
Weeds like plantains and dandelions have broad flat leaves that, while they are easy to remove using a hand trowel or daisy grubber, can smother large yard areas and stop the growth. Yellow medick, clover and buttercups can also spread across a lawn rapidly, so raking before mowing can help carry them into the mower blades, weakening them over time, and killing them off.
To get rid of weeds, try to prevent using weedkillers. Chemical weedkillers could be costly and eventually do not address weak grass health, that encourages weeds to flourish. The best choice is to take out the whole weed, including the roots. You can do this by hand or by using a tool. However, if there is a large amount try spraying the weeds directly with a low toxicity herbicide.
Mosses are non-flowering plants that can create the worst issues with the lawn. In places that have excess moisture, shade and low-quality grass, they flourish.
The amount of moss will increase if left undiscovered or untreated, decreasing the ability of the grasses to grow. The initial conditions that allow it to develop include:
> Poor drainage
> Clay within the soil
> High quantities of thatch
The source of the issue must be identified and mitigated in order to eliminate the moss. With feeding and scarification, it can then be monitored and maintained.
4- Relieve compacted grass
Compacted soil stops well-growing grass and may lead to bare patches in the summer and in the winter to mud baths. Push a garden fork about 10cm deep into the soil every 10cm and gently rock back and forth on the fork handle to alleviate the compaction and aerate the ground. The prongs open the soil, enabling the roots to relax and fostering regrowth of the grass.
This technique helps air and water to penetrate deeper into the root zone of the grass, which is vital to obtaining the right nutrients to grow. It is an excellent way of maintaining lawns damaged by waterlogging or drought.
To increase ventilation and avoid future compaction, brush sharp sand or fine horticultural grit into the gaps on heavy terrains, such as clay soils.
5- Water your lawn
The amount and frequency of irrigation in your area will depend on the type of soil and weather conditions. In order to get better results, it is best to water the lawn at the beginning of the day in colder temperatures.
Always water young lawns, but do not overwater, as this may lead them to root weakly and develop improperly. Use rainwater from a water butt or greywater from your bath or wash-up tub, if possible. Sprinklers are suitable for maintaining gardens hydrated, but they use a lot of water supply and are not the best option. If an existing lawn turns brown, don’t panic, it’s not dead. When the rain falls, it will actually green up again.
6-Feed your lawn
You have to feed it regularly to keep your garden looking healthy. For a quick and precise task, invest in a wheeled lawn feeder if you have a big garden. Add fertiliser to the lawn when rain is expected so that it gets down to the roots and prevents it from burning the green leaves. If there is no rain, use a hose or watering can to water the fertiliser.
In most gardening stores, there is a range of lawn feeds and fertilisers available. Depending on the current soil and climate at your location, the type required will depend. Some of these would have suggested implementation guidelines, so it is best to obey their product instructions.
It is usually recommended to treat twice a year, once in spring with nitrogen-rich lawn feed and once in autumn with a high-phosphate and potash fertiliser. An organic fertiliser, over chemical alternatives, can improve long-term lawn health. Inside a week, your lawn would appear greener.
7- Fill bare lawn patches
It is safe to sow grass seeds over the raked soil instead of letting bare patches ruin the appearance of your lawn. Additionally, from new turf, make fillers. When realigning the garden, gather the strips and place them 5 cm apart in a compost-filled seed tray, then grow them on the outside or in a cold frame.
Cut out a rectangle or square around the field to cover the bare patch, and dig up the soil in the rectangle to whatever depth of soil your new turf strip is. Lay the grass gently, cut to match, over the patch. Firm it down so that there are no holes and no higher or lower turf.
8- Over-seed your lawn
By covering the entire area with vast amounts of seed combined with fertiliser, over-seeding rejuvenates exhausted and dried out lawns. This fills degraded and thinning regions, thus improving the colour and reducing the possibility of invasions of weed and moss. The yard would need to be aerated, mowed and well-watered before the seeds can be spread. To help get an even distribution of seeds, spreaders are available for purchase.
The grass will have to be kept moist once planted to facilitate germination, and a top dressing will have to be added to cover the seeds and provide nutrients. You should perform this action on a yearly basis to maintain a safe lawn.
9- Top dress your lawn
This is used to build up and enhance the quality of the existing soil, providing extra drought resistance and drainage, whilst evening out any imperfections.
As with all other maintenance, to get the right materials and consistency when creating your top dressing, the soil type for your garden will need to be checked.
10- Get your soil tested
If you find that despite all the efforts, your lawn is not flourishing or performing like your neighbours, there may be several variables involved. A lawn care service may conduct a soil test or perform other methods to enhance your lawn. The right nutrients, pH levels and other natural balances needed for safe grass root growth may be missing from your immediate soil around your home. Your soil can need aeration, periodic cultivation, or loosening. This helps to get air into your soil and can support lawns that need enhanced stimulation of growth and good nutrition.
Using these top tips to inspect and manage your lawn regularly, along with removing any unnecessary surface debris such as dead twigs and leaves, and scaling back any areas that produce excess shade, will keep your lawn looking lush and balanced.
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